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Poster: Round Robin Date: Feb 20, 2011 2:08pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Zappa And The Dead

Are there any links between the two, did they ever hang out at any point?

Any interesting quotes said about each other?

I've never come across anything.

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Poster: light into ashes Date: Feb 20, 2011 4:08pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

From comments at http://lostlivedead.blogspot.com/2010/08/march-9-1968-carousel-ballroom-san.html -

I don't recall the Dead ever playing "with" Zappa; but on their first visit to New York in June '67, he was playing upstairs from the Cafe au Go Go during their run there.
Zappa, of course, was known for being a non-drug person (and enforcing the same on his band). Rock Scully said, "Zappa, having never dropped, was generally a complete butt and no fun at all."
The Dead were distressed at how tiny the Cafe au Go Go was, making the stage sound a mess - as Phil says, "The band was playing directly into a brick wall at point-blank range, and the ambient noise and bounce back were deafening."
(Mountain Girl said, "We hated the Cafe au Go Go. It was painted all black inside and it smelled really bad. You could reach up and touch the ceiling. The stage was tiny and the equipment had to be wedged in there. It seemed like we'd come a long way for such a small gig." Laird Grant adds, "That place was really strange. You're jammed into this brick, low-ceiling tube...and everyone was sitting down instead of dancing like we were used to. That was a weird trip.")
Phil Lesh talks about seeing Zappa in his book. The Dead went to see Zappa at the upstairs theater, the Garrick: "Real nice place - too bad we couldn't play here. The Mothers of Invention comes on and dives into an insane torrent of sound. We listen, jaws on the floor. Zappa's music is brilliantly composed and precisely played - hey, he won't let his band smoke pot - but short on any kind of improvised epiphanies."
Laird Grant was surprised to find Zappa's audience throwing fruits & vegetables at the band! The Dead, it seems, were spared.

Corry adds:
A poster circulates for a June 21, 1968 show in San Jose with the Mothers and the Dead, but the show was canceled (per Charles Ulrich, the expert on these matters). It was a weekday and I think the culprit was just poor ticket sales.
Aside from that, the only shows featuring both the Grateful Dead and the Mothers were at the Fillmore on June 3-4, 1966. (The Quicksilver Messenger Service also played.)

Garcia and FZ shared a bill in the 80s. Any social relationship between Zappa and Garcia is just wishful thinking. Not that they wouldn't have gotten along as a matter of fact, I'm sure it would have been fine, but both of them would have been surrounded by others who wanted a piece of them and there wouldn't be any chance to hang out or play.

According to Rock Scully, some of the enmity of Zappa towards the Dead stems from the Mothers sneaking off to get high with the Dead. In any case, many of Zappa's "feuds" with other musicians (like Lou Reed) were exaggerated for effect, because Frank thought it made good press, so I don't think he had any serious animus towards Garcia or the Dead.

There are some more details in this post, which covers the shows played at the Cafe au Go Go in early '67:
http://rockprosopography101.blogspot.com/2010/01/cafe-au-go-go-new-york-city-152_8329.html

"There was a small theatre above the Au Go Go, but at the same address (152 Bleecker). At this time, it was simply “upstairs”, but around June it was renamed The Garrick Theater. The Garrick Theater has since passed into infamy since their summer 1967 show was called “Absolutely Free” and featured West Coast legends The Mothers of Invention. The Mothers were billed at the Garrick from May 2 thru September 5, although they took time out to play gigs in other East Coast cities.

Sometimes the Mothers had decent crowds, and sometimes they had only a few people. Sometimes, they had tourists from New Jersey who thought if the marquee said “Absolutely Free” they wouldn’t have to pay, only to find out that not only did they have to pay, the first number was some very ugly men in dresses performing “Stop In The Name Of Love."

All the musicians and roadies playing the village in the Au Go Go and other clubs would hang out at the Garrick and watch the Mothers. When Zappa would invite “members of the audience” to come onstage and mutilate stuff giraffes and cover them with shaving cream—shocking at the time—often enough it was members of the Grateful Dead’s road crew (or whoever was playing the Au Go Go) who leaped eagerly on the stage...

According to the memory of Dead manager Rock Scully (in his book Living With The Dead), Frank Zappa’s enmity for the Dead partially stems from these two weeks when The Mothers were playing upstairs at The Garrick while the Dead played in the basement at the Au Go Go. The perpetually anti-drug Zappa resented that the Mothers would sneak downstairs to get high with the Dead. The Mothers were deathly afraid of being caught by Zappa, knowing that the punishment was more rehearsal."

(And for the curious, there is more non-Zappa discussion of the Dead's first New York shows here:
http://lostlivedead.blogspot.com/2009/12/june-1-1967-tompkins-square-park-new.html )

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Poster: ice9freak Date: Feb 20, 2011 8:23pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

LIA, I stand corrected. I must have been thinking of Scully's book, which I haven't read in years, because the MOI Garrick engagement sounds exactly right.

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Poster: reviewr Date: Feb 20, 2011 8:05pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

In the early '80's Zappa and the JGB played a Halloween show together in Chicago. At the time I didn't care for FZ, but now I wish I was there. Zappa, JGB, Halloween - WOW!

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Poster: Cliff Hucker Date: Feb 20, 2011 3:02pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

Wasn't there an incident at a club in NYC (Cafe Au Go-go?) ('67 or '69?) when Zappa was performing upstairs and the Grateful Dead were in the basement? Something about PA volume?

I seem to recall something about this but the details escape me now. Can anyone elaborate?

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Poster: dark.starz Date: Feb 20, 2011 6:23pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

The first large production rock concert i saw was Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention at The Auditorium Theater in Chicago, May 21, 1971.

They performed Peaches en Regalia and introduced Billy The Mountain. The audience remained in their seats and it was impressive the orchestrative sound this band produced.

Zappa was a major talent and ego in the grand scheme of the underground music industry in the 60's/70's. He/They strongly felt that the Mothers of Invention were head and shoulders above all the other bands of the day in terms of musicianship.

An interesting documentary film is available from netflixs;

http://www.netflix.com/Movie/Frank-Zappa-and-the-Mothers-of-Invention-In-the-1960s/70115181




This post was modified by dark.starz on 2011-02-21 02:23:30

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Poster: skuzzlebutt Date: Feb 20, 2011 3:01pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

I think Frank's disdain for hippiedom in general and recreational drug use in particular have been pretty well documented. He may have looked like a hippie, but he sure didn't think/act like one. To say he did not share the same worldview as most folks in the GD organization is probably an understatement.

I've never known exactly what to make of Zappa myself. I've explored a great deal of his massive catalog over the years, and while I really do enjoy a lot of it, it seems I can never build up a lot of momentum before running into some juvenile number about piss, jizz, shit, or something like that. It just seems weird that for all his musical genius, he never outgrew 5th grade bathroom humor. Then again, I've been asked point blank how I could keep listening to the Dead despite their obvious vocal limitations, so to each his own.

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Poster: user unknown Date: Feb 20, 2011 3:48pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

try this one...I think you may be surprised

http://www.allmusic.com/album/strictly-genteel-a-classical-introduction-to-frank-zappa-r276663

This post was modified by user unknown on 2011-02-20 23:48:11

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Poster: unclejohn52 Date: Feb 21, 2011 9:20am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

How about Waka/Jawaka? One of my favs from the era, kinda blew my mind at the time, haven't put it on in 30 years though.

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Poster: ice9freak Date: Feb 24, 2011 2:52pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

A top flight FZ disc for me. Right up there with Roxy and One Size Fits All.

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Poster: midnightcarousel Date: Feb 21, 2011 9:09am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

I hate this album. I find it pretentious and boring.

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Poster: user unknown Date: Feb 21, 2011 7:45pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

Well I prefer "Freak Out", "We're Only In It For The Money" and am especially fond of (the only FZ authorized compilation) "Mothermania"; but thought "Strictly Genteel" was a representation of Frank that didn't exactly fit skuzzlebutt's description. Of course, my favorite FZ & the MOI was their closing set at the 1969 Charlotte Jazz Festival. I really wish I could find a bootleg of that show.

This post was modified by user unknown on 2011-02-22 03:45:20

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Poster: Ronnbbo Date: Jul 4, 2013 3:39pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

Frank Zappa did live in Monterrey California for a while before living in the Los Angeles and San Diego areas. Jerry Garcia was born and grew up just north of Monterrey in San Francisco, San Mateo and the Bay area.

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Poster: Ronnbbo Date: Jul 4, 2013 3:26pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

Dot Stein, the famous masseuse to the stars, toured with both bands. Dot got her nickname "Dr. Dot" from Zappa. While she has toured with other bands as well, both Frank Zappa and Grateful Dead are perhaps in her Top 5 list for number of gigs.

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Poster: lobster12 Date: Feb 20, 2011 4:23pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

There was that great moment from the 1985 NYE show on the USA network when an obviously "altered" Ken Kesey was screaming tings that may or may not have been on the New years float. At one point he screams, "It's frank Zappa!!" to which Father Guido sarduchi responds, "it's not Zappa."

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Poster: Administrator, Curator, or StaffLum Edwards Date: Feb 20, 2011 3:35pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

http://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/extreme-rare-ticket-frank-zappa-with-jerry-garcia

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Poster: ice9freak Date: Feb 20, 2011 2:58pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

I'm a huge fan of both, but I haven't found a lot of connections between them. In his song "Teeange Wind," FZ does lampoon the typical drug-addled youth of the early 80's and mentions both Jerry and the Dead directly.

I also remember reading a Zappa bio years back (the author and title escape me--I bet someone here might know what I'm thinking of, though) that included an account of members of The Mothers of Invention hanging out with the Dead and crew and freaking out the whole time, paranoid that Zappa might catch them. FZ was very much anti-drug his entire life and kept a tight leash on his musicians. Could the Dead organization have been any more the opposite? I think not!

This post was modified by ice9freak on 2011-02-20 22:58:34

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Poster: Secretdiva Date: Mar 7, 2013 11:18am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

I am the link between Zappa and the Dead. I was a member of the Mothers and I opened to the Dead when they first played NYC at the Cafe Au Go Go in 1967 which was downstairs from the Garrick where I performed with Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention every night. I became friends with Bobby Weir and Phil Lesh and went on to write "Haze" w/Bobby and the Midnites and sing background with JGB in 1981. Also still friends with Rock Scully whom I just saw this January. Glad I came across this and could answer your question.

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Poster: grendelschoice Date: Mar 7, 2013 1:52pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

Been a huge Zappa fan for a long time and consider "You Are What You Is" one of the greatest, most underrated rock albums of all time. FZ was also a brilliant guitarist and while I have no direct knowledge of it or info I would like to believe that both he and Garcia were at the very least aware of each others' body of work and respected each other as top-notch guitarists.

Lucky enough to see Zappa once, live, in 1988 at Tulane Univ. and the show was among the best live concerts I've ever seen. This was during the tour where they would often encore with "Whipping Post" and it was simply electrifying.

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Poster: Secretdiva Date: Mar 7, 2013 2:32pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

Lucky indeed! Zappa was the best or perhaps the only one who did what he did. I too was extremely lucky to find myself in the best band I ever heard. When the Mothers jammed it took you to levels unparalleled in my experience.
As far as what he or Garcia thought of each other, I never heard either of them speak of each other. Of course, I spent a lot more time with Frank than with Jerry Garcia so I can't really speak for Jerry. Their approach to music was entirely different. They were like opposite sides of a coin who can't observe the other side. They were probably both too self absorbed to think much about each other.

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Poster: Old_NJ_Head_Zimmer Date: Feb 20, 2011 3:40pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead - 8-18-84 JGB and Zappa

Jerry opens - Zappa closes

Read about it here

http://www.thejerrysite.com/shows/show/1764

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Poster: DeadRed1971 Date: Feb 20, 2011 2:40pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

Considering Zappa's lyrics for Who Needs the Peace Corps, I don't think Zappa had much love for the GD's scene.

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Poster: johnnyonthespot Date: Feb 21, 2011 9:13am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

I know that's what I thought too BUT he did ( according to Joel Selvin ) sleep with Janis and he did hang out with various musicians and in another book I read the Dead showed up and checked him out in NY.

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Poster: Dudley Dead Date: Feb 21, 2011 7:05am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Zappa And The Dead

There is one (sad) connection between Garcia and Zappa:They both chain smoked , and had unhealthy diets, which , mostliklely contributed to their deaths .
For me, Zappa, and Garcia , were sort of a Yin and Yang . Both of them had a big influence on me .